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    By Gary Mann

    Most construction drawings have the note “All Dimensions in mm” located somewhere on the drawing. Within the Cymap Piping Program, pipe sizes are placed on the floorplan using the name given in the Piping Database program. In the screenshot below, the name of the pipe is shown as 15 mm. This is fine, but does not conform to any standard drawing convention and also uses five characters, two numeric, a space and two alphabetic characters. It also repeats the mm dimensions previously stated, see below.


    Compare the notated radiator Branches & connections above and below, a tidy alternative?


    To alter the Pipe name to include the diameter symbol, you need to be in the Piping Database program. Open the Pipe that you want to add or edit using the Ø.  Remember, if you ever alter any database, you must rename to avoid having different files with the same name, a sure recipe for disaster.

    • Position the cursor in the required position
    • Press and hold down the “Alt” key
    • Type the Alt Code value of the diameter symbol 0157 on the numeric pad
    • Release the “Alt” key and a Ø diameter symbol appears

    The above procedure is not applicable for the MacOS.


    The above screen shot shows the diameter symbol replacing the mm references.

    Compare the compactness and lack of ambiguity of using the ascii character prefix.

    N.B. Some Building Services Engineers use the diameter symbol after the character, which is not to be advised. This is because if placed after the number e.g. 15Ø, if the drawing output was to become creased and the oblique line lost, it could be mistaken for 150. Imagine!

    There are other ascii symbols including fractions such as ¼, ½ & ¾ which could be used for an imperial range of pipes, but I will leave that for your own investigations to find the required ascii numbers. The diameter symbol can also be summoned using Alt+0216 on the numeric keypad, but the shorter one is easier for me to remember.

    Let me know if you have a favourite Cymap Tip that we could pass to others and you could add to your c.v.